In Ayurveda, it’s important to take care of yourself in accordance with your dosha. Self-care ayurveda rituals that help to balance vata might not be so great for pitta. That’s why it’s important to adopt the best self-care rituals that work with your constitution.
These are some of the best self-care Ayurvedic rituals for balancing the different doshas. Most of these rituals excel at bringing balance to one particular dosha, but the last one is an all-around self-care practice that can help to balance all three doshas.
Dry Brushing (Kapha dosha)
Dry brushing is an Ayurvedic ritual that is especially useful for balancing kapha. Dry brushing is a great ritual to enjoy during the cold, dark months of kapha season. Dry brushing helps to boost immunity, detoxify the skin and fight off the lethargy of excess kapha.
Start brushing in the morning before you shower. Using upward strokes, start with your feet and work up your legs, past your belly and up toward your heart. Next, brush from your hands towards your heart. It can be useful to have a friend brush your back. Finally, brush your chest and abdomen in a clockwise direction.
Self-Massage / Abhyanga (Vata dosha)
Abhyanga or Ayurvedic self-massage, is a daily practice that can help ward off excess vata, old age, and exertion. Abhyanga involves a morning oil rub that helps to get rid of tension, strengthen the skin, increase circulation and improve your nervous system.
Vata is cool and dry, and by practicing abhyanga it warms the body and improves much needed moisturizing and lymph circulation. Use heavier oils that support vata dosha such as (almond, sesame or avocado. Using moderate pressure, massage the oils into your skin, starting with the feet working your way upwards toward your shoulders and neck.
Meditation (Pitta dosha)
Pitta is hot, fiery, and active. To balance pitta, you need to enjoy Ayurvedic rituals that are slow and cooling. Meditation is a great practice for pacifying pitta. Meditation helps to bring about focus, contentment and relaxation.
The simplest forms of meditation involve breathwork. Simply bringing your attention to your breath is enough for you to gain focus, eliminate distractions, and gain control over your emotions. All of these things help to balance pitta.
Nature Walks (Vata dosha)
If you might be feeling ungrounded, struggling with a racing mind, or having anxiety, this means that you’re struggling with excess air and wind - in other words, excess vata. The best way to combat this is to stabilize yourself with the grounding energies of earth.
The simplest way for you to do this is to take a hike. Take a trip to a nature reserve or a local forest and spend an hour or two reconnecting with the earth. If you can, walk on bare feet. The physical connection to the soil will help to balance vata.
Taking a Bath (Vata Dosha, Pitta Dosha, Kapha Dosha)
Out of all the Ayurveda rituals, bathing is one of the most versatile. Bathing represents the cleansing of the spirit as well as the body. Baths can be great for bringing balance to all doshas.
Baths are fantastic because you can set them up any way you like. Figure out what works best for you and your dosha by including different herbs, oils, or flowers in your bath. As alway, in Ayurveda you should let your body guide you to the best scents, oils and rituals. Cultivate a ritual that makes you feel good and nourished and supported. Don’t force a ritual if you don’t feel that it resonates with what your body needs in the present moment.
WRITTEN BY NIGEL